Ruble Drops for 8th Day After Russia Protests, Moody’s Review

The ruble dropped for an eighth day, the longest losing streak January 2009, after protests across Russia against Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s government and a warning from Moody’s Investors Service that it will review European countries’ credit ratings.

The Russian currency lost 0.4 percent to 31.5841 per dollar at the close in Moscow. The ruble was 0.5 percent stronger at 41.7904 per euro, leaving it little changed at 36.1769 against the central bank’s target dollar-euro basket.

As many as 25,000 people gathered in central Moscow Dec. 10, police said, to protest the alleged electorial fraud in the parliamentary elections of Dec. 4. Last week’s European Union summit offered few new measures and doesn’t diminish the risk of credit-ranking revisions, Moody’s said today. The EU is Russia’s largest trading partner.

The protests “are compounding concerns over weaker oil and slower global growth,” Johannesburg, South Africa-based Tradition Analytics wrote in an e-mail. “They will result in increased political uncertainty being priced into the ruble.”

Russia’s $3.5 billion of bonds due 2020 fell for the first day in four, pushing the yield up eight basis points to 4.622 percent. The yield on ruble debt due 2021 was one basis point higher at 8.56 percent, while the country’s ruble Eurobond due in 2018 yielded 21 basis points more at 7.435 percent, the biggest jump since Nov. 1.

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